Wednesday, June 5, 2013

 The time to prepare for summer bushfire safety is not when you see this:

The time to prepare for summer bushfire safety is in the winter. Now.

Winter is the time to:
·        Inspect the house and grounds.
·        Make and mend.
·        Start thinking about your bushfire safety plan.

To keep bushfire out of the house, make and mend, paint and fill.
Houses are rarely destroyed because approaching flames burn the cladding. Ignitions almost always start inside, from ember penetration.

Clean out the roof void! If you don’t have an inspection trapdoor, make one. Insulate above and below rafters. This is an extremely vital bushfire-protection job.
Embers can’t penetrate roofs if you secure loose iron and fill nail holes.
Insulate with mineral wool, fibreglass batts or aluminium foil laminate.

Walk round your property and take note of spots where it is more windy than others.
If you find any narrow space that pulls wind through, such as between house and fence, block it with a solid gate, fence or fire-retardant plant. Hedges and walls can be wind and spark inhibitors to help prevent cladding from drying, windows from cracking, and as shields to shelter people from radiant heat. 
Build a radiant heat shield - a masonry wall about 2 metres high and wide, ideally 6-10 metres from an exit door. A brick barbecue backing can double as a radiant heat shield.